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Chelsea at Crunch Gym

Forty Weeks of Fitness!

Chelsea, our pregnancy fitness expert, is a certified personal trainer at Crunch gym in San Francisco, California. She gave birth to her daughter, Madeira Re, in July 2006. Read more

Gestational Diabetes

To control elevated blood sugar:

  • Eat a variety of foods, distributing the calories and carbohydrates evenly throughout the day.

  • Don't skip meals! Even if you're feeling bloated or nauseas, eat something. This will help maintain an even your blood sugar level throughout the day.

  • Your body uses high-fiber foods more slowly than carbohydrates and will keep your blood sugar levels from spiking too high after meals. High-fiber foods include whole grain breads and pastas, cereals, dried peas, and beans.

After birth, a baby born to a mother with gestational diabetes may have breathing problems, low blood sugar, an increased risk for jaundice, polycythemia (extra red blood cells in the body), and hypocalcemia (low calcium in the blood), as well as a higher risk of developing childhood and adult obesity and diabetes. In extreme cases, the baby’s heart function could be affected.

Unlike other types of diabetes, gestational diabetes usually resolves itself after delivery; however, you will have to take a glucose test about six to 12 weeks after delivery to be sure your blood sugar levels have returned to normal. A small percentage of women remain diabetic after delivery, but many experts believe these women had undiagnosed cases of diabetes before they became pregnant.

According to the March of Dimes, approximately 50 percent of women with gestational diabetes will develop it in future pregnancies, and 50 percent will develop type 2 diabetes within 5 years after delivery. Risk factors for future diabetes include:

  • Obesity
  • If you had very high blood sugar levels (especially if you needed insulin)
  • Your diabetes was diagnosed early in your pregnancy
  • The results of your postpartum glucose test were elevated, but not high enough to classify you as a diabetic.

Gestational diabetes is a serious risk to your health and that of your baby; however, with proper prenatal care, careful monitoring, and a healthy diet and exercise, you can ensure you and your baby will remain healthy.

For more information:

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